Columbus State Professors to Present at Washington Seminar on Korea

COLUMBUS, Ga. -- Columbus State University professors Kyle Christensen, Tom Dolan, an expert on Korean and Chair of CSU’s Political Science Department, and Kimberly Gill, Director of CSU’s Masters in Public Administration Program will be featured speakers Thursday in Washington, D.C., at a panel discussion called, “South Korean Attitudes Toward the U.S. Rebalance to Asia and Korean Unification,” that is being held by the Korean Economic Institute (KEI).

This event, initially scheduled for February, was been postponed because of a snowstorm.

They will take part in KEI’s first-ever Academic Paper Series program where two reports will be presented, deliberated, and compared. First, Karl Friedhoff from the Asian Institute for Policy Studies will talk about his paper on South Korean views on the U.S. rebalance to Asia. Then CSU’s Kyle Christensen, Tom Dolan, an expert on Korean and Chair of CSU’s Political Science Department, and Kim Gill, Director of CSU’s Masters in Public Administration Program deliver their latest research examining South Korean Ministry of Unification survey and other data on views of unification.

In 2012, Dolan visited South Korea to do public opinion research in the cities of Seoul, Incheon and Busan regarding unification. Because it was done in Korea, and because the surveys were written in Korean, translating and sorting through the data took a lengthy period of time to collect.

“It was focused on attitudes South Koreans have on unification,” Dolan said. “About what they think the obstacles to unification are and particularly seeing if people of different ages have different opinions on it.”

Their paper will be distributed internationally to 5,000 Korean policy people and to the international audience on hand for the panel discussion.

Dolan has worked with the KEI for almost five years. At the time he was initially involved with KEI, its president was Charles L. (Jack) Pritchard, formerly the US’s ambassador and special envoy to North Korea. Pritchard came to CSU September 2009 as the keynote speaker for the Hallock Lecture Series. Additionally, KEI’s academic director, Nicole Finnemann, helped Dolan with a course he was teaching on North Korea and the Six Party Talks in 2010.

###